Question from one of you! Motivational Interviewing and Group communication
Want to watch the video podcast? Join MI PLUS+
Wow this podcast is full of great information about using Motivational Interviewing with groups or in a group setting. This question came from one of you, our listeners! Kati works in a school setting and was curious how Motivational Interviewing could be used in groups.
In this Podcast we discuss:
- How to use Motivational Interviewing in groups
- Tips: don’t fall into the expert trap, get engagement first, EPE (Elicit, Provide, Elicit)
- The spirit of Motivational Interviewing and whats your intention
- Refocusing groups
- And so much more!
Want a transcript? Read below!
[00:00:00] Hello, and welcome to the communication solution podcast. Here at IFIOC, we love to talk communication. We love to talk motivational interviewing, and we love talking about improving outcomes for individuals organizations and the communities that they serve. Today, we’ve got Casey Jackson on the line, John Gilbert, and I’m Tammy.
Welcome to the conversation.
John Gilbert: Hello everyone. And welcome to another conversation with us here at the communication solution. You know, each one of us from our intro and we today have a really interesting topic that is going to come from a listener that we really appreciate Katie.
If you wouldn’t mind, Tammy just orienting us to what Katie had asked us, and then we can go from there with what, to a respond to.
Tami Calais: Yes. Sounds good. So Katie actually wrote [00:01:00] in the question she was asking about, can you use Motivational Interviewing as a tool for group communication?
She said that her background is in behavior interventions in a public school setting, and she would often end up working with students in small groups. She’s done some reading on synergistic change, talk in a group setting, but I’d love to know if IFIOC has any more information on it. So that is our conversation today, Motivational Interviewing in group settings.
Casey Jackson: So I can tell you for me, this is a question that has kind of percolated at times from the beginning. Ever since I started training it, not a common question, but it, it will surface fairly often. And kind of the two names the forefront of Motivational Interviewing and groups is Chris Wagner and Karen Ingersoll who wrote a book on Motivational Interviewing and groups.
And John was talking about, there’s a coding tool that [00:02:00] Johnny can reference as well to talk about a bit too, but prior to even knowing the things that had been written about Motivational Interviewing in groups is I was thinking about how, how I was using motivational interviewing in group therapy sessions in family therapy.
What I realized in explaining to people is that first of all, you need to really be pretty skilled at Motivational Interviewing individually, because there is a complete different level of complexity that I found in using it in a group setting. The way I started to look at this was like, I remember getting called in asking to work with this group of Youth that were justice involved.
And they said, we know we wanted to learn how to use Motivational Interviewing can use Motivational Interviewing with these guys in the group and all these concepts. And so what I was talking to them about is the way that I think of a way to look at Motivational Interviewing, in groups is if you treat the group as a brain with all these little brain cells in it, and there’s going to be ambivalence inside that brain.
And so it’s not like you’re talking to them [00:03:00] in mass. I mean, there’s still this level of engagement, but you have a sense of how the majority of them are feeling and that the majority, and probably have mixed feelings about being in that group, especially if it’s a BI classroom or that, you know, a small group from a behavioral classroom.
You can think there’s part of it. That’s just like, they don’t want to be separated out. They don’t want to feel that way. They also don’t want to get the negative attention in classrooms, you know? So there’s some basic empathy. When you’re thinking about articulating a reflection and you’re thinking about talking to it as if it’s one brain.
The way that I would explain the way I would use it is saying like, this is perfect with both of you, you know, in the podcast with me of saying, you know, Tammy, when you first started, this was something you were completely opposed to. You thought this was a waste of your time and you thought I just don’t even want to be here.
You’d sit in the corner, had no intention of changing. And basically that’s what John’s behavior is right now. And, and I can then turn over and say, you know, John, that’s kind of the way you are now. You think this is a bunch of BS. [00:04:00] You don’t even want to be here, Tammy. There was something about you. What shifted for you?
Because for the most part, this felt like such a waste of your time. What, what changed for you? And it’s almost like you’re doing a double-sided reflection of one brain, but you’re doing it in the group because they’ve had similar behaviors or similar perspective or similar kind of reaction. So I know that I’m going to get resistance and sustained talk from John.
And I know there’s a probability. I’ll get sustain talk one more change, talk from Tammy. And so you can almost use that in a group dynamic because you’re gonna see that ambivalence in a group. If it’s a group that’s fully functioning on track, no resistance, no ambivalence. You wouldn’t be using Motivational Interviewing as a tool or a method of communication anyway, to be what’s the point of the group, unless it’s a process group, which means there’s, points of contention or there’s going to be ambivalence that, that comes up. In those group where there’s such a good respect for boundaries and people are there to learn and listen, and it’s kind of this improvement group perspective. It’s much easier than to grasp it from [00:05:00] that.
Tami Calais: So what you’re saying is like in this group setting, whether it’s two people, five people, 10 people.
However many people, if you can find a couple of different sides of the ambivalence within that group, that’s what you can help reflect in the double-sided reflection to bring out how most people are feeling.
Casey Jackson: Yeah. And, and, and what you’ll see, I, John, I think you were around when I used to do this with Washington state divisional rehab with their orientation, because they just had a struggle with orientation.
They said, you know, people wait till the end. And then they ask all these questions and they end up leaving the group after sitting there for two hours, just angry and upset because they shouldn’t even have sat through the two hours. And I said, if, you know why at least 60 or 70% of the people are in there.
And you know, that there’s a portion of them that don’t even believe that if they knew what this was about, they would opt out. You can start, you can either do that from an educational perspective, but so many people will hear your [00:06:00] instruction, or let me explain what this group is about and think it doesn’t necessarily relate to them until they get asked their question.
So it’s like, yeah, yeah, yeah. I know those are the rules. I know that that’s what it’s for, but I need to ask a specific question, but it’s an orientation. So what I would say is start with high empathy of going, you know, a lot of people, this feels very odd being in a state agency where, you know, especially if you’re looking for public assistance, some you’re comfortable with that.
And so we were very uncomfortable with this. Somebody who had a disability from birth. And so you have a newly acquired disability And some people are here just because they heard that DVR would just pay for college. Like if you just showed up and you had a disability, they just they’d pay your tuition.
So for those of you that have a disability are looking at long-term employment, This is something that works really well. There’s some people that just show up and think, Hey, if I show up, they’re going to give me a job. And that’s an employment agency. That’s not DVR. So a lot of people show up for orientation and that’s how they feel.
And they get really frustrated thinking, my God, I just came in for a job and I’ve been here for six months and I’m still not working. And they get really, really frustrated. You know, some of you are here [00:07:00] for different reasons. And they said when they started using more of that narrative, that felt like everybody’s being talked to, like there was an empathetic aspect to it.
There’s people that would get up during orientation. ’cause, it was just like, oh yeah, that’s what I was looking for. That’s not what this is about. And they just get to leave and not wait for two hours and then be really angry about, well, I heard and you said, and they said so it would clean some of that up so that I wouldn’t say that that’s Motivational Interviewing in groups, but there is that thing about if you know, your population like a BI classroom, you know what some of the feelings are, you know, what some of the experiences are coming in there.
And so when you float those out there, And say it, you could hear a student say, yeah, it feels like all the teachers are against me because you lead off by saying no there’s days. You feel like all the teachers are against you and there’s days that it feels like the students are against you. And that gets really frustrating.
But then there’s days that it’s just like, I want to go to school. I want to learn, but it feels like nobody really helps me do. So I can say that group of six kids in a BI classroom or in a subset, and [00:08:00] somebody is going to respond to that. And you’re going to start to see where is the resistance? Where’s the sustained talk.
Where’s the potential for change talk then
John Gilbert: One thing is you’re talking Casey, that’s just really, really powerful is it seems to me that there’s these layers of awareness. Ability and skill or knowledge, skill, and ability in groups that Motivational Interviewing can come in to. Help facilitate, like you’re talking about with say there’s a sense of resistance or ambivalence in the room for even being open to Motivational Interviewing or components of whatever’s going on there being voluntold to be there, you know, in department of corrections, I’d get kid with the effort you can teach us all sorts of things like that.
And what I want to speak to is there’s a layer of recognizing when to use full on Motivational Interviewing and when to use components of Motivational Interviewing or some, [00:09:00] some level. And I just want to define some level of, again, bringing it back to what are we trying to do with Motivational Interviewing it’s to decrease resistance. Access potential ambivalence. If it exists in there and then help it, if that exists to resolve towards them, aligning their behaviors with what they say they want in this case, probably a, some kind of helping profession or, or stability and security with their job, at least, you know, if they’re doing that.
But the whole idea is trying to tap into something. There, if there’s ambivalence and to, to the point you said earlier of if the group is engaged, there’s healthy boundaries, there’s all these things. I just want to throw in there that you’re going to be further along in the spectrum, we talk about, you know, the processes of engaged focus.
We’re going to be more in planning and preparing. If you’re going to use components of Motivational Interviewing there are certain tools like elicit provide elicit. You can keep going. There’s a spirit of being [00:10:00] curious of what they make of that or how they see that working. There’s a collaborative component each day of mapping out the agenda for the day.
There’s all these sorts of tools. I feel that you can bring in with a highly engaged. Highly motivated group, but you’re not necessarily going to be addressing the ambivalence and resolving ambivalence so much as like you said, with kind of the information and education you’re using an Motivational Interviewing spirited approach with that.
So it’s kind of just determining just like we have with our one sheeter, for the Motivational Interviewing approach you match where that group is at. And if that group has a bunch of dynamics, Of different places where they’re at. It’s just that much more challenging because the brain has that much more different brain cells.
And one thing I want to highlight that came to mind earlier when you were talking about that is to not go after just the minority of the brain cells as it were. Even though, you know, you could [00:11:00] reach those people in the ways that you were talking about earlier, which was very highly skilled by the way to say, you know, Tammy, you know, you were in this place and John, you, you might be in that place now, like that ability to do that, I have more and more seen is even more extraordinary.
So I bow to that. Casey is just incredible. To do that authentically. And to do that in a genuine way, it takes such a level of awareness and skill. And if that’s the minority of people, try to go, you taught me with the majority of where people are at to not need. To drag down the momentum of the group for the sake of a few people and vice versa with the highly motivated people that I tend to attune to too much, and then go too fast.
And there’s this balance of where is the whole brain at? Is there ambivalence? How much ambivalence, how authentic can I be in how I, depict empathy like you were doing so authentically with rhetorically, like, [00:12:00] and maybe I’m thinking all of that stuff really matters for a really skilled facilitator, but even at the basic facilitation of Motivational Interviewing 101 , is there resistance?
How do I try to deal with the ambivalence? How do I try to use my spirit of curiosity and support choice? And I feel like there’s different layers to take it. At least the way I’m interpreting, you’re talking about it. I’m a bit biased is at a pretty high level of awareness, skill and authenticity all mixed together to really try to do your best with the skillset to bring to the table.
Casey Jackson: That’s it, John. And, and that’s why it was important for me to even launch this off by saying you really have to be skilled at motivational interviewing before you start to think by using it in a group setting. Because of what you’re talking about, the layer and the complexity of that, you really do have to have a level of skillset.
To be able to understand what’s going on. What, what struck me when you were talking as well, is when you’re talking about, you know, we try not to [00:13:00] overcompensate for the, kind of the most resistant pieces of the group, which is something I used to do when I would train. I get excited about finding where the most resistance is and knowing I can convert that resistance into ambivalence.
And I remember you and I have talked about this before, when I, when I started to shift away from that is, that in the moment, what I realized is I’m sacrificing 85 or 90% of the people that want to be in the training who want to learn to get 10% back on track.
And I’ve got 90% of the people who are learning by me getting the people on track, but I’m not advancing their learning the way I could with the 90% of the people that are really engaged and want to move forward. So that was just my own reconciliation. The dual universe with that is, oh my gosh. That’s almost what so many people fall into when they’re younger in motivational interviewing with staying too long and empathy and sustain talk..
When, even if there’s a motor come of change, talk, we know we want to pour more energy and give that more light nutrition and, and you know, oxygen. So it’s the, it’s so fascinating that [00:14:00] kind of parallel process that as you get higher skilled at motivational interviewing, you can hear change, talk more readily and know based on experience and based on data.
You’re going to see more of a profound shift. The more adept you are at cultivating and expanding and exploring deepening and converting change talk just then you are spending way more time in the sustain talk. So it’s this completely like octave level difference between, you know, talking from a person how often we spend too much time in empathy.
And now what you’re talking about of, yeah, I would need to be careful because if there’s two or three people in a group that are more on the resistant side, we can’t cater too much to that. For the sake of a larger group. And it’s like, you’re talking again where they’re talking to individual dynamic, we’re talking about collective conscious consciousness.
It’s that same reality of based on experience and based on data, we know that the more skilled you get, the more we tend to lean towards change, like because of what it yields.
John Gilbert: And what’s so critical here is an [00:15:00] interesting contrast that I’d be curious of your thoughts and reactions to Casey, because there’s a certain level of.
If kind of like Dr. Theresa Moyers will talk about if you’re going to err, on the side of not doing harm, err, on the side of empathy. And so could you linger, as we talk about in the Motivational Interviewing Competency Assessment tool you could linger could you follow or wander like is under guiding in the Motivational Interviewing competency assessment? Yeah, totally. Now there’s this sense that you instilled in me and that seems to be really important in groups.
Make sure you have engagement that their reality is on the table and that it’s attuned to. Even at the expense of covering content at the expense of direction and guidance. So that’s something I’ve really had to attune to. Cause I want to bring up the other end of this ambiguous spectrum here in my mind, which is the other end of the spectrum.
Instead of wondering, I guess it’s not ambiguous, but wondering following is, you know, directing as we talk [00:16:00] about in the Motivational Interviewing. Where my mind was going. There is this other spectrum into the spectrum, being that expert trap that we talk about in Motivational Interviewing and how, and I’ve talked about this a lot with Sue one of our colleagues in an organization, mint, a coach that has so many helpful, helpful ideas .
She was talking about this balance, cause we’ve talked about this, cause we’ll work together with the coaching with IFIOC and this balance of not falling into the expert trap, but also conveying information and education. And when you’re in a group setting or even certain kinds of coachings, if they’re open to it, how do you do that?
But not fall into the expert trap. Right. How do you recognize that people are in that state of openness and interest in asking you questions, but also not always expert trap, expert trap. So I’ve had to learn this sense of how do I balance out empathy and [00:17:00] engagement. Without falling so much into the expert trap with the people that are particularly motivated so that I’m not going so high in direction that I’m losing the majority of the people that aren’t as where those few interested people that are more speaking up and more engaged.
So I would be curious of how you have. Become aware of that if at all for yourself, because I know we have different styles and different approaches, but just any thoughts you have on what you’ve seen for people that, you know, I’ve seen this with healthcare people in particular that will take the chain shock and run with it.
Right. And so how do you, how do you balance out that sense of not falling in the expert trap, but still conveying information with empathy? Still recognizing people are asking questions and not wanting to parking lot at all the time, but still. Doing it in a way that isn’t slowing down the process, but that isn’t going too fast.
What are your thoughts on that?
Casey Jackson: Yeah, [00:18:00] again, a couple layers of it. I mean, he bouncing back between the individual and the, and the kind of collective approach to the group approach to motivational interviewing from my vantage point. And one of the first things that struck me, John, you were talking, is it helped my brain get clear about what is your role in the group.
If you’re a group leader that’s different than a group facilitator. If you’re a group facilitator, you should be facilitating learning. If you’re a group leader, you know, if you’re the group leader in I was going back to my old days, working in substance use treatment. We had a psycho-education group for parents.
You don’t facilitate that because they’re there to learn about. Drugs and the impact on the body and impact on their children impact on family. That’s different than me facilitating a group with parents who have youth that are using substances. Those are two different roles. One is to have an open conversation and share and learn from each other and grow from each other.
One is because they’re there to be educated. That’s why [00:19:00] they signed up. By an expert or a professional or somebody is going to lead the group in that process. So, so that’s what I partially think about when you’re putting this example that there is so much of it is defined by what is my role in this group, because it could be a psycho-education group where they, the group is lurking looking to learn something from the leader of the group that is not an Motivational Interviewing based group.
This is what your point earlier that is accurate is we can use components of motivational interviewing of active listening, empathetic responses. You don’t capitalize on change soccer. We hear it. But our, our role is not to change behavior in the role of the group leader. The one for the person for Katie her role is to do some of that and facilitate it.
So I think that’s, I think what’s helpful as we’re distinguishing things is what is our role when you’re looking at it from an educator perspective, it’s not that you’re necessarily trying to change behavior, but what I want to drill down to for what the example you brought up is when you have these.
Some kind of super users in the group who are absorbing and chopping information. And then [00:20:00] another portion of the group that feels left out, or they’re just not the same level of engagement. Again, if we, the first thing my brain started to do is when I run it through the Motivational Interviewing and filter, I go to that example of when people give change, talk, like I want to get healthy.
I want to lose weight. I can’t just jump into a perfect, let’s get you in a CrossFit class and you’re going to go protein plant protein based by the end of the week. Just because they said they wanted to get healthy. So just because we get changed talk doesn’t mean we can jump to plan automatically. You have to cultivate more of that.
So when I think of that in a group setting, there has to be a preponderance of change brain going on in the group. If you’re gonna move towards plan or experts. So, or it can be just defined by the nature of your role. I could have somebody in the psycho-education group and there’s four parents that feel like they’re forced to be there.
And six parents who are, are just hanging on every word. I’m not going to wait for the other four parents who don’t want to be there. To give education. I’m just going to give the education to the six parents that really came there to learn something. [00:21:00] And so the people that feel like they were forced there by the school or somebody.
So because it’s not a behavior change based group, it’s an education group. So I think that’s the same thing as educators. We have to think about that, our groups the same way, or when you’re looking from a group perspective, what is my role? What are the objectives? You know, what did they sign up for? And am I orchestrating that to the best of my ability for everyone that signed up that then that’s a different type of you know, a purpose.
And that’s why, like we always do that. We run it through that filter of Motivational Interviewing, is it resistance or discord is our ambivalence is our target behavior. They’re working on some groups have a very specific target behavior they’re working on. Some are just process groups that get together. AA is a process group.
You know, there’s not there. They’re all focusing on substance use, but the, the point of the group is not to get them into. A different stage of change based on their values. Those are self-motivated.
John Gilbert: Yeah, this is, this is really helpful for me and Tim yet. I don’t want to suppress you out of the conversation.
So please feel free to jump in here, but I’m just having all sorts of interesting [00:22:00] thoughts come to mind, having, you know, been involved with training now and doing all this for as getting trained by Casey and just all these thoughts. One of those is Casey you’re talking about a particular.
It’s subset of people versus the majority. And I just go, well, how would you, you know, know how would, you know, was one concept that went through and you could say, well, it’s changed talk, but then another concept that came through and you were talking, was this sentence. Well, are you focused on helping resolve ambivalence or are you focused on developing some education and a skill set and that delineation of kind of I’ll put those in two sort of categories, resolving ambivalence, being more pure Motivational Interviewing.
Education and skillset development. It’s not that there’s not any overlap here. It’s that there is a Venn diagram overlap I’m doing with my hands, but that, it seems like the more you go towards the spectrum of [00:23:00] education and skillset development, the more you’re going to be in that you could use an Motivational Interviewing spirited, evoking, EPE, all these other things that we know can help things stick for people and, and be embodied by people yet.
That is also. A bit heavier handed or leaned then helping someone resolve ambivalence is going to be even more particular to their reality without as much, necessarily as much education or skill development. I just thought that’s a helpful way to start thinking about. What’s my role in this moment with this individual or this group of people.
And that might shift if it’s small groups. When I was thinking about Katie, depending on the dynamics in that group, if that group is particularly a set of individuals or kids or something that have a particular. Sociological bend towards not doing the activity. That group might be different than this other, you [00:24:00] know, more stigmatized goody two-shoes group that really wants to do the activity.
And so just recognizing the attunement like we have in our Motivational Interviewing approach to is the group more in majority pre-contemplation. Or early contemplation, are they more in deep contemplation or preparation in my, more than based off of that, going to be an education and skill facilitation, or am I going to be more in helping empathize and help resolve some ambivalence related to the topic at hand?
And I just was, that was going through my mind. That was really helpful. The last thing that was going through my mind that I’m curious of either of your thoughts on, but Casey, you had taught me a while back. What, you know, we were talking about intentions, right? Like in the Motivational Interviewing Competency Assessment, what’s your intention.
And you would always ask me that what’s the one or two things you want them to walk away with. Maybe you said two or three, depending on the length of it. And I always thought, gosh, that’s so little, right. But it’s so critical. The more I [00:25:00] found in group settings and even individual work that I’ve been up to with people.
What’s the one or two, maybe two or three things for them to walk away with. And I was just wondering if you could speak to that a little bit more and then I’ll be quiet. I mean, you can chime in with whatever, but I just was curious where that came from. Was that just experienced or. Giving voice to that for others that are group facilitating for people to walk away, whether that be education and skill development, one or two or three things, or resolve of ambivalence one or two or three things, just giving voice to that and where that came from and how important.
Casey Jackson: I think like everything else, just the more expertise and the more exposure you get, the more you learn. And for me with Motivational Interviewing so much more has been experiential than book learning. You know, I got that initial book learning and then it’s just been trained and practice, train, and practice, train, and practice, train, and practice, and then read research on the side and then try to read books on the side and those things.
For me, I just, that’s why I’m [00:26:00] obsessed with the practical application, the real world of how Motivational Interviewing works in really complex situations. So in my own evolution from just being a clinician to a trainer and moving through that, you know, supervisor, administrator, those kinds of things, what I’ve developed a, a profound awareness of, and this even came up in a consultation I did today with an organization.
What I told them is you have to be crystal clear what your vision and your mission statement is. And for me, this goes to the whole group concept of what’s. Why is the group getting together? If somebody is going to pay for a training, they want an education around it. They may show up a not act like they want it, you know, and we can respond to that.
You can have when they’re, when they’re it’s a BI class or behavioral classroom or a subsection of that, they’re not there because they’re, they’re there to make smoothies. You know, there, there be for specific things around academics and behavior that needs to be addressed. So that has to be part of the equation.
Is it, is it a self self-help support? Is it a psycho-education group for parents of children with substance [00:27:00] use? Is it you know education for justice involved, individuals who want to find employment? Like, what’s the, why are we getting together? There has to be that clarification and that if you’re not clear about that, then the instructor just goes about, or the facilitator just goes about doing what they think it’s about.
But if the collective is not clear about that, by definition, Motivational Interviewing, you don’t have very good focus. Which means you’re gonna have more than one right way, which isn’t wrong. You’re gonna have people ending up at different end points because nobody knows to at the top of the mountain is. So I think that needs to be clear.
It’s also why there’s times, you know, you’ve experienced this, I’m sure on your own, but with me as well, and we co-train together. I know I do this often is saying, you know, and the point of this training really is, is you get to decide how much professional development you want. If you really want to affect behavior change.
And it may not be something you’re interested in, but that’s the reason why people are here is because we really there’s people that just genuinely want to understand how can I communicate more effectively because I really want to [00:28:00] improve outcomes. And for some of you, it’s just like, I don’t want to sit through another training on zoom, you know?
So it just, I think it’s that almost refocusing in the moment. This is something that’s come up. Another main question I get, and it relates to this thing in group, but it was such an individual thing as well is, and you’ve heard this too. Both of you have heard this in trainings of people saying, oh, I wish I would’ve known this with my old clients.
I’m not going to use with my current clients, but I’m use with all my new clients. And my response always is there’s never a bad time with anyone to get refocused on why we’re here. I think that in any group or any situation, I think we can get. Nest the size as group facilitators or group leaders in almost assuming that people know why they’re in our group and that can be lackadaisical on our part because that is not how we treated on day one.
We very first facilitated our first group. We wanted them to know about us and the process and what the goals were, you know, 200 groups later. And you skip [00:29:00] a lot of that stuff because it’s like, oh, they know. And it’s like, well, it doesn’t mean it’s not the obligation on you as a leader to refocus them.
It’s the same thing in an individual thing, as it is in a group session with why are we here? What would be your best case scenario? Some of you’re forced to be here. All of you have volunteered to be here. All of you have paid to be here. I mean, what’s what, why are they doing. You know, so I think did that clarification for me in Motivational Interviewing is that focus.
Once you start to get focused, that’s where you can start to assess where is the ambivalence about what the target behavior, the target goal or the objectives of the group are. Once we get clear about that, then we can decide where is the accurate ambivalence existing? Or was it mostly just confusion of why are we here and what do you want from me?
And that keeps turning to this lady who keeps saying, you know, you need to pay attention and raise your hand in classrooms. You know, it’s just, so did I get in trouble? There’s other kids that don’t raise their hands. I mean, it just, if they, if they don’t understand, it’s really hard for individuals to stay focused.
Once you get clear what the [00:30:00] target is, that’s where you can start to assess does the end, but where does the ambivalence exist about the target behavior and not just a general resistance to being in the group. You had some thoughts earlier.
Tami Calais: I think we might have to save that for another podcast, but I will say I liked that summarizing essentially or summarizing, you know, what the focus of the group.
In simple terms because it does help them understand why they’re there and it kind of, like you said, gets people refocus. So that was a really good mental moment for me.
John Gilbert: And with that, Tammy, that further solidifies, we’re bringing it to the very end of our day and with being at time. I was talking about this with a group this week for an advanced group and getting into that.
So for those that are interested in. We do talk about these in our intro and advanced courses of how to view more practically I’ll just give a quick summary voice to what we’ve talked about here. And, and part of that is the intention of the [00:31:00] facilitator being clear. What is your role that Casey was talking about?
What’s your role as, as. Psychoeducational is this more a resolving ambivalence as I was framing, but there might be a combination of the two depending on where that group is at or that day or whatever it is. But determining that with what is your rule, what is required of your role and just getting clear on those things.
So that at some point there’s a sense of clarity of focus. To what that is so that there’s, you know, what people, some people in, in a group facilitation we’ll call expectation management, it’s a little compliance oriented, but at least there’s a sense of focus, more Motivational Interviewing oriented, and the practical nature of that to the degree that Casey was saying at the beginning and towards the end.
Is expressing empathy in some sort of authentic, non robotic, non parroting way that engages people in the group, whether they’re earlier in the spectrum of pre-contemplation or later it engages their perspective. [00:32:00] And then from that place, ideally checks in or somehow brings in change talk. For what is wanted, what’s the point?
What are we here for? And that can be a long check-in or that can be a brief check in sometimes check-ins, but somehow having that combination of engagement with empathy authentically like Casey was doing and focusing the conversation, engage , focus, and then movement forward was just something I wanted to bring together for some practical concrete things for group facilitation with each individual small group, if it’s Katie in that situation, or somehow a mix of that in a large group.
So I just wanted to bring that together, but anything else before we wrap up.
Casey Jackson: Yeah, and this is just, I have to say, just because it’s one of my triggers in talking about Motivational Interviewing, in groups, and it’s just, it’s completely kind of a sidetrack, but it’s just one of these things that I think is I just have a need to say, because it is such a trigger for me.
[00:33:00] I do have a significant reaction when people do have groups that are called a group for people in pre-contemplation. And so I just want to put that out there when we’re really thinking about the complexity of motivational interviewing. If you’re using Motivational Interviewing as a tool, that group should only last for maybe 15 to 20 minutes, and that group should not be there anymore because they should be at least been contemplation of using Motivational Interviewing skills.
So that’s just my last kind of things we’re looking at Motivational Interviewing in group? It’s just that one particular topic that, that I’ve ran into more often than I would think that, you know, oh, we have a group for people in pre-contemplation. And my response always is, well, I hope that doesn’t last more than a day or a group or two, because they should be in contemplation after that group then if we’re using Motivational Interviewing skills.
So again, it’s not about people are in pre-contemplation it’s, you know, what’s the target behavior. So I think it puts that in context as well, too. You’re looking at individual dynamic and group dynamic. And I think that’s what makes this such a fascinating question about how do we use Motivational Interviewing in group communication?
John Gilbert: Which could be its own separate podcast. We could go off on. I feel [00:34:00] because there’s so much richness to this. So if you do have. Questions or comments and would like us to add information or opinion or whatever’s helpful from us. You can email email@example.com, that’s firstname.lastname@example.org and send those in.
And there’s all sorts of things we could get into, even from what Casey just said, which is what target behavior are we focused on? Are we focused on values and motivation or does it have to be just the substance use? Stopping or can it be reducing? There’s so many different things to get into depending on what your setting is and how you’d like to apply it.
So if you want to talk more about groups, if you want to talk more about things like presentations and ways of using techniques of Motivational Interviewing and presentations, we could get into that. We were potentially going to talk about that. If you want to talk about. In groups on societal level or politics, we can get into that.
So there’s all sorts of ways to think about Motivational Interviewing and approach it with different awarenesses and skillsets. We’re just here to hopefully add to being [00:35:00] a communication solution in your world. And hopefully this has helped you out Tammy or Casey. Anything else before we wrap up today,
Tami Calais: I’m just going to say, thank you, Kati for sending him the question.
Casey Jackson: And I want to reinforce build on like, you know, Tammy and John just said, We love having, we invited Katie on. If you want to beyond ask the question. If you ask the question, you don’t have to be on the podcast, but if you do ask the question and want to be on the podcast, we love to have people on it’s just more brains are better to get into these fascinating conversations.
So you’re more than welcome to. To send those in and just reinforced today was another day where we had the webcast. And so if you’re part of the Motivational Intervieiwng plus membership, we get to have these kinds of conversations once a month on a Friday. So it’s not me, blah, blah, blah. Well, there’s a little bit of me, blah, blah, blah.
But it’s mostly because you’re there asking me questions that you want to blah, blah, blah, about too. So it’s almost like a live version of the podcast that would be in, you know, a. Something that’s just one specific topic. So just think about the MI plus+ membership because you get to get in these active dialogues with other people in the Motivational Interviewing [00:36:00] community.
They’re just fascinated with all these components. So just, that’s another thing to think about on ways to up your skills and join in. And I’d be remiss to say. Katie was talking about, Motivational Interviewing in education? Casey does trainings in schools on Motivational Interviewing and education. There’s a series of books by multiple authors in the out there in motivational interviewing education.
I’m sorry to hold it at hand a little bit there, but I just wanted to give voice to that’s its own podcast. That’s its own training. There are resources that we have available on that. And if you’d like us to go deeper into that in any different age groups, Please let us know email@example.com so thank you all so much.
If you have not heard our whole podcast on motivational interviewing and school administration, that would be another resources. Yeah. Excellent. Thank you everyone. Thank you finally. All right. We reached the end and take care of everyone. Bye-bye bye.
Tami Calais: Thank you for listening to the communication solution podcast.
As [00:37:00] always, this podcast is all about you. So if you have questions, thoughts, topics, suggestions, ideas, please send them our way at firstname.lastname@example.org. That’s email@example.com for more resources, feel free to check out ifioc.com. We also have a public Facebook group called motivational interviewing every day. We have an amazing blog and we have lots of communication tips on our website.
In addition to all these amazing resources we do offer online public courses on our website on motivational interviewing. And effective communication strategies. Thanks for listening to the communication solution by IFIOC.